New Raleigh gallery marries visual art and music

by Cristina Virsida

Walking into City Market’s newest gallery, Amplified Art, is like taking a peek inside a famous musician’s private studio, complete with rare performance photos, original artwork and a fully loaded stage for intimate jam sessions.  Opened in October of 2010, the 1,900 square foot addition to downtown Raleigh’s City Market showcases music-inspired pieces ranging from photography and jewelry to concert prints and t-shirts, with space devoted exclusively to the work of local artists.  Currently, the works of local photographer Sandlin Gaither are on display in the main “sound booth”.  In June, the spotlight turns to local screenprinter, JT Lucchesi.

Work from recent show by James Flames

“This type of art triggers those same feelings you get when you go to a concert and the lights go down and you remember those first chords and you can tell all your friends the setlist song for song.” says Owner Ryan Miller. “You now have an amazing piece of art to commemorate that event – it just seems to go hand in hand.” Miller and co-owner, Diana Tong, are eager to expand their collection into fine art, sculpture and 3-D pieces.   “We’re especially interested in artists that use music as inspiration for their pieces.” says Ryan.

In collaboration with City Market’s “First Friday”, Amplified Art holds its own “after party” featuring live music from 10pm to midnight, beer and wine served. Additional free events include rockumentary showings, open mic nights and Raleigh Rising, a venue for local musicians.   Their upcoming “Third Thursday” event on May 19th will feature local band Jack the Radio, from 7pm to 10pm.  Poetry readings and opportunities for the performing arts are in the works as well.

Amplified Art is located at 224 East Martin Street in Raleigh.  Artists, musicians, poets and other performing artists can contact Ryan Miller or Diana Tong at email or call (919) 745-1238.

Cristina Virsida is a freelance photographer and writer from Cary, NC

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